Sat Aug 31st, 2019 at 03:37:24 PM EST
UK, EU ramp up Brexit talks as Parliament suspension backlash grows
"We cannot imagine reopening the Withdrawal Agreement," said Maas. "We assume that Brexit will happen on October 31. We will do everything to avoid a no-deal Brexit. But the British government has made it clear that if there is no agreement (on the Irish border) a no-deal Brexit will happen."
Interesting behind-the-scenes chatter:
I hear the argument more and more in continental Europe that Britain would be such a problematic member of the EU, the metaphor of cancer, or poison is used.
No deal would poison relations for a generation. There would be a huge blame game. The Brits would blame it on continental Europe, continental Europe would blame it on the Brits.
As we've been saying.
And the economic fallout would be very dark, very serious indeed.
More for the UK - but see below - than the EU. The EU has the resources to fund a bog-standard Keynesian jump-start investment program. If Denmark can sell negative interest rate bonds then the EU could float 1% bonds and get them snapped up. It's the political will that is lacking.
Do you think Britain would come crawling back to the EU in the event of no deal?
The idea that this is likely to happen any time soon is one I really caution against. Many of my friends believe that we would be back within a few years. This is complete nonsense. First, it's a misreading of the Brits. We are stubborn, bloody-minded, it would take a few years before we admit we made a big mistake. Secondly, the Scots would leave, Northern Ireland would be off with Ireland. We'd be back to the 16th century, the whole constitutional structure of the UK would be called into question. And then the EU would itself move on, along Franco-German lines, and therefore it would be a different kind of EU. And we would have none of the perks like the rebate, we would have to sign up to the Euro. It would be an illusion.